Chicken Pot Pie with Fennel and Mushrooms in a Potato Bowl Thursday, Feb 14 2013 

Serves 4

FOR THE STEW
1 1/2 lb. bone—in, skin-on chicken thighs
Kosher salt and freshly ground black pepper
2 Tbs. olive oil
2 Tbs. all-purpose flour
1 1/2 cups lower-salt chicken broth
2 cups sliced mushrooms, such as oyster, hen of the woods, or chanterelles
1 1/2 cups small-diced fennel (from 1 small bulb)
1 cup small-diced carrot
1 cup fresh pearl onions, peeled. or frozen pearl onions, thawed
1 Tbs. chopped fresh thyme
2 Tbs. Dijon mustard
1 oz. (2 Tbs.) unsalted butter
2 Tbs. thinly sliced fresh chives

FOR THE BABY CARROTS
16 baby carrots with tops, peeled and trimmed with 1/2 inch of the tops intact
2 Tbs. olive oil
Kosher salt

FOR THE WHIPPED POTATOES
3 lb. russet potatoes (about 4 medium)
Kosher salt
1/2 cup whole milk
3 oz. (6 Tbs.) unsalted butter, softened
Freshly ground black pepper

Position a rack in the center of the oven and heat the oven to 375°F.

MAKE THE STEW
Season the chicken with 1/2 tso. salt and 1/4 tsp. pepper. Heat the oil in a 10- to 11-inch straight-sided sauté pan over medium-high heat. Cook the chicken, flipping once, until lightly browned, about 10 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a plate. Reduce the heat to medium and whisk the flour into the fat in the pan. Cook, whisking, for 1 minute. Gradually whisk in the broth and bring to a simmer. Return the chicken to the pan, reduce the heat to medium low, cover, and simmer gently, turning once, until the chicken is very tender, about 15 minutes. Transfer the chicken to a clean plate and let cool briefly.

Meanwhile, stir the mushrooms, fennel, carrot, onions, and thyme into the sauce. Cover and simmer until tender, 5to 6 minutes. Stir in the mustard and butter and keep warm. When the chicken is cool enough to handle, pull the meat from the bones, shred into bite size pieces (discard the skin and bones), and add to the sauce. Season. to taste with salt and pepper and keep warm.

ROAST THE CARROTS
Put the carrots on a small rimmed baking sheet. Drizzle with the oil and season with 1/4 tsp. salt. Roast the carrots until tender and slightiy browned, 20 to 25 minutes. Keep warm.

MAKE THE WHIPPED POTATOES
Peel and quarter the potatoes. Put them in a 4-quart saucepan; add enough water to cover and 4 tsp. salt. Cover and bring to a boil over high heal. Uncover, reduce the heat as needed to keep the water from boiling over, and cook until tender when pierced with a fork, 12 to 15 minutes. Drain well. Return the potatocs to the pot over medium heat and stir occasionally until they no longer steam profusely (a little steam is fine), about 2 minutes.

Meanwhile, heat the milk in a small sauce pan over medium heat until steaming, about 2 minutes. Keep warm.

With an electric hand mixer on medium-low speed, beat the potatoes until they’re broken up, 1 to 2 minutes. Add 1/2 cup of the hot milk and the butter, and beat on high speed, scraping the sides and bottom of the pot occasionally, until fluffy, 1 to 2 minutes (the potatoes should be fairly stiff, but add the remaining milk if needed). Season to taste with salt and pepper arid keep warm.

ASSEMBLE
Spoon the whipped potatoes rito a pastry bag fitted with a 1/2-inch plain tip (Ateco #806). Pipe the potatoes to form “bowls” on each of 6 plates; the bowls should be about 3 inches in diameter and about 2 1/2 inches tall. Spoon the chicken stew into the bowls and garnish with the roasted baby carrots and the chives.

Abigail Johnson Dodge, Fine Cooking, April/May 2011, page 87

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Seafood Corn Chowder Tuesday, Feb 12 2013 

1 tbsp extra virgin olive oil
1 white onion, chopped (about 1.5 cups)
2 large carrots, chopped (about 3/4 cups)
2 stalks celery, chopped (about 3/4 cups)
sea salt and fresh ground black pepper, to taste
1 jalapeno pepper, chopped (seeded if you’d like to reduce heat)
1 bunch chard, chopped
1 tsp smoked paprika
3/4 tsp dried thyme
1 lb russet potatoes, peeled and chopped (about 2.5 cups)
3 cups frozen corn kernels
1 cup low-fat milk
3/4 lb sea scallops
1/2 lb medium shrimp, peeled and deveined
3 scallions, white and light green parts, thinly sliced

Heat oil in a large Dutch oven or stockpot on medium. Add onion, carrots and celery; season with salt and black pepper and cook until soft, about 8 minutes.

Add jalapeno, paprika and thyme and cooks for 1 minutes, stirring well.

Add 3 cups water, increase heat and bring to a boil.

Add potatoes and reduce to a simmer until just tender, 7 to 8 minutes.

Add corn and milk; season with salt (1/4 tsp minimum) and black pepper, and simmer for 3 more minutes. Remove from heat. Add chard stems.

Pour 3 cups corn mixture into a blender, covering opening loosely with a kitchen towel to prevent splatters (steam from the hot liquid may cause the blender’s lid to pop off) and puree. Transfer puree back to pot, stir to combine and return to medium heat; bring to a simmer. Add chard greens.

Add scallops to pot and simmer for 3 minutes (time should begin when liquid returns to simmer).

Add shrimp and simmer for 2 minutes or until shellfish are opaque in center.

Remove from heat and taste for seasoning. Ladle into bowels, sprinkle with scallions, dividing evenly, and serve.

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